Author Topic: Canada converts Sea Kings for battlefield role with SCTF  (Read 47137 times)

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Offline 404SqnAVSTeach

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Canada converts Sea Kings for battlefield role with SCTF
« on: February 08, 2006, 08:09:37 »
Quote from: 'Janes'
The Canadian Air Force has initiated the conversion of five CH-124B Sea King anti-submarine warfare helicopters to a battlefield transport role (in a similar way to the UK's Commando/ Sea King HC.4 from the Westland version of the Sea King).

The converted Sea Kings will become part of the new Standing Contingency Task Force (SCTF) announced in Canada's 2005 Defence Policy Statement. The Sea Kings are being converted to the transport role at a cost of approximately CAD5.5 million (USD4.8 million). They will have their sonobuoy dispensers and AN/UYS-503 acoustic processing system removed, and 12 troop seats will be added, along with the AN/ARC-210 1794C radio with secure two-way communications.

"We are also looking at an engine air particle separator as a follow-on activity," Major Max Shaw, weapons systems manager for the CH-124, told IDR.

The helicopters will not be fitted with any new weapon systems other than the C6 (MAG 58) 7.62 mm general-purpose machine gun, which they can already carry. They are also already equipped with a self-defence suite consisting of the AN/ALQ-144 infrared countermeasures jammer, the AN/AAR-47 missile-approach warning system and the AN/ALE-47 decoy dispensing system.

Maj Shaw stated: "The objective here is to keep it simple, this is an interim measure so the present navigation system and the present radar remain."

The conversion modifications are being undertaken by IMP Aerospace (Halifax, Nova Scotia) and the air force's Aerospace and Telecommunications Engineering Support Squadron.

The work on all five aircraft should be complete by November, just in time to participate in a proof-of-concept exercise for the SCTF in November to December 2006.

The SCTF will be a quick-reaction sea-based force comprising a naval task force of three to five ships, including an amphibious ship; air assets including four to six heavy-lift helicopters and CP-140 Aurora surveillance and reconnaissance aircraft; and a land component built around a light task force of approximately 800 to 900 soldiers.

Lieutenant-Colonel Danny Houde, Directorate Air Strategic Planning, told IDR that the Sea King helicopters will be used "to provide a lift capability until other options are developed, for instance the arrival of the Cyclone into the field force sometime down the road". Canada's air force is acquiring 28 Sikorsky H-92 helicopters (designated the CH-148 Cyclone) as a replacement for the Sea Kings in their maritime role, with first delivery beginning in late 2008.

There has been no decision on whether the Cyclones or a different helicopter would be used for the SCTF lift role, but Lt Col Houde said: "At the moment, the CH-148 Cyclone is the option that we are looking at."
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Offline beenthere

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Re: Canada converts Sea Kings for battlefield role with SCTF
« Reply #1 on: February 09, 2006, 10:43:48 »
Awsome.
But not lately. If I could do it all over again I would  change one thing.

Offline Sheep Dog AT

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Re: Canada converts Sea Kings for battlefield role with SCTF
« Reply #2 on: February 09, 2006, 10:57:30 »
Interesting.
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Offline CTD

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Re: Canada converts Sea Kings for battlefield role with SCTF
« Reply #3 on: February 09, 2006, 11:43:39 »
"I do not beleive it. Only because a few guys on here said it wouldn't happen no matter what".

On a better note good for them. The army needs a capable chopper that can actually do it's job. Nothing like a refit and hopefully some new parts for the Sea King.

Cheers

Offline Armymatters

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Re: Canada converts Sea Kings for battlefield role with SCTF
« Reply #4 on: February 09, 2006, 11:55:51 »
In the part regarding the possible usage of the Cyclone in the standing task force role, are they looking at converting some of the ASW platforms, or are they follow on orders for additional airframes? Just a quick quiery.

aesop081

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Re: Canada converts Sea Kings for battlefield role with SCTF
« Reply #5 on: February 09, 2006, 13:10:45 »
In the part regarding the possible usage of the Cyclone in the standing task force role, are they looking at converting some of the ASW platforms, or are they follow on orders for additional airframes? Just a quick quiery.

Thats a good question actualy.

My take on it is that final product will not only be an ASW aircraft but also orientated for ASuW.  Remember we started with 41 CH-124s and now have 28 ( 27 if you count the latest crash).  Spread the 28 CH-148s between both line sqns ( 423 & 443) the OTU (406) and HOTEF, account aircraft down for perodics, some down for long-term snags, if the air force is to fulfill its obligations to supporting the fleet in the maritime role ( essential if  SCTF is to move by sea) more airframes will be required in order to add a new full-time capability.  IMHO 28 ASW/ASuW aircrafts is an insufficient number, reducing it to provide a transport capability will leave SCTF, and the navy as a whole, vulnerable.

My 2/10 of a dollard though

Offline kj_gully

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Re: Canada converts Sea Kings for battlefield role with SCTF
« Reply #6 on: February 09, 2006, 13:56:18 »
On a better note good for them. The army needs a capable chopper that can actually do it's job. Nothing like a refit and hopefully some new parts for the Sea King.

Cheers

Well, i don't know about all new parts, we are sending crew seats from our Cormorants back to IMP to be retrofit into the sea kings. Remember the Gulf War when we took Frigate 20mm AAguns and chaff and put them on the tanker? Still looked like a tanker to me.

Offline SeaKingTacco

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Re: Canada converts Sea Kings for battlefield role with SCTF
« Reply #7 on: February 09, 2006, 14:08:53 »
Quote
Well, i don't know about all new parts, we are sending crew seats from our Cormorants back to IMP to be retrofit into the sea kings.

I'm sitting not 50 feet from those new seats as I type this.  They look very spiffy in the back of a Sea King, Thank-you very much :) 

Once you start strippng out a Sea King, there is alot of room inside.  I think you guys will be suitably impressed with the results.

As for how the whole Cyclone buy is going to work out, I have heard of no official changes to the Project at this point, as a result of SCTF.  There is a whole lot of speculation, but I won't waste your time with that.

Cheers

Offline kj_gully

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Re: Canada converts Sea Kings for battlefield role with SCTF
« Reply #8 on: February 09, 2006, 14:15:17 »
Maybe once the Cam paint comes off we could paint them yellow! Better yet paint them yellow now, and paint the Cormorant green.

Offline h3tacco

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Re: Canada converts Sea Kings for battlefield role with SCTF
« Reply #9 on: February 09, 2006, 16:52:58 »
While SKT won't waste your time with speculation I will ;D

What the Cyclone fleet will look like in the future is currently being debated/considered but as I see it comes down to three options.

1. Keep 28 Cyclones and use some in the SCTF role. ie role fit the mission kit
2. Purchase additional Cyclones specific for the SCTF role.
3. Purchcase another helo type for SCTF role.

There are probably other options floating around but I think those are the most likely but only time will tell.

Offline Junius

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Re: Canada converts Sea Kings for battlefield role with SCTF
« Reply #10 on: February 09, 2006, 16:58:30 »
Doesn't the Sea King require 30 hours of maintenance for every hour it is in the air?

Wouldn't the money be better spent on new helicopters?

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Re: Canada converts Sea Kings for battlefield role with SCTF
« Reply #11 on: February 09, 2006, 17:03:59 »
You are aware that new helicopters are being purchased right?
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Offline h3tacco

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Re: Canada converts Sea Kings for battlefield role with SCTF
« Reply #12 on: February 09, 2006, 17:09:30 »
BKells I will answer you question first with another question how many hours of maintenance does any other helicopter require? Everyone throws around the 30hrs without comparing it anything else?  That is my biggest pet peeve with people who bring up 30hrs maintenance/hour flying.

The Sea King fleet currently has its isssues but the SCTF Sea King is an interim solution that will provide a decent solution in a very short amount of time for a small cost (relatively speaking).

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Re: Canada converts Sea Kings for battlefield role with SCTF
« Reply #13 on: February 09, 2006, 17:19:46 »
So, not only do they get to fall out of the sky on to nice soft ocean waves, they also get to fall down onto those nasty rocky Afghan mountains?  Equal opportunity deathtraps, cool!!      >:D
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aesop081

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Re: Canada converts Sea Kings for battlefield role with SCTF
« Reply #14 on: February 09, 2006, 17:31:31 »
Doesn't the Sea King require 30 hours of maintenance for every hour it is in the air?

Wouldn't the money be better spent on new helicopters?

That would be 30 man-hours per flight hours.  If you dont understand "man-hours", here's how it works : 6 Guys working on an aircraft together for 5 hours makes 30 man-hours.  Clear as mud ?

now i dont know if the "30 hours" is the actual figure.  But the fact that it is "man-hours" is something the media usualy leaves out of their reporting.
« Last Edit: February 09, 2006, 17:35:41 by aesop081 »

Offline dapaterson

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Re: Canada converts Sea Kings for battlefield role with SCTF
« Reply #15 on: February 09, 2006, 17:49:06 »
AESOp - my sentiments exactly.  And if we consider the comprehensive overhaul/rebuilding that the Bisons are currently undergoing, coupled with their routine maintenance once back in service, what will their ratio of man-hours of maintenance vs hours of operation look like?
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aesop081

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Re: Canada converts Sea Kings for battlefield role with SCTF
« Reply #16 on: February 09, 2006, 17:52:00 »
AESOp - my sentiments exactly.  And if we consider the comprehensive overhaul/rebuilding that the Bisons are currently undergoing, coupled with their routine maintenance once back in service, what will their ratio of man-hours of maintenance vs hours of operation look like?

The media twists its story to fit its editorial position and then the misconceptions are perpetuated by folks like BKells that have no understanding of the subject ( other than what the media feeds them) and make the kind of comment that precipatated my comment.

Offline Ex-Dragoon

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Re: Canada converts Sea Kings for battlefield role with SCTF
« Reply #17 on: February 09, 2006, 18:35:22 »
Quote
Remember the Gulf War when we took Frigate 20mm AAguns and chaff and put them on the tanker? Still looked like a tanker to me

40 mm Bofors actually and none were from the CPFs.
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Offline Navy_Blue

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Re: Canada converts Sea Kings for battlefield role with SCTF
« Reply #18 on: February 09, 2006, 18:46:59 »
Isn't the Cormorant taking up more maintainance time these days than the sea king??

Just wondering...
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Offline 3rd Herd

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Re: Canada converts Sea Kings for battlefield role with SCTF
« Reply #19 on: February 09, 2006, 18:55:30 »
So, not only do they get to fall out of the sky on to nice soft ocean waves, they also get to fall down onto those nasty rocky Afghan mountains?  Equal opportunity deathtraps, cool!!      >:D

Got a good deal on some steel umbrellas since it may seem Pat Bay will have less cluttering up the air over Victoria. Okay fun aside my hat goes off to SeaKing and the others who keep this piece of kit in the air and have the 'cojouns' to fly in them, there's are bigger than mine. To certain recent posters on this site "No matter what piece of kit you have there are going to be maintenance hours with it", end of story.
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Offline SeaKingTacco

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Re: Canada converts Sea Kings for battlefield role with SCTF
« Reply #20 on: February 09, 2006, 19:13:47 »
Quote
Got a good deal on some steel umbrellas since it may seem Pat Bay will have less cluttering up the air over Victoria. Okay fun aside my hat goes off to SeaKing and the others who keep this piece of kit in the air and have the 'cojouns' to fly in them, there's are bigger than mine. To certain recent posters on this site "No matter what piece of kit you have there are going to be maintenance hours with it", end of story

What makes you think we have bigger balls than anyone else in the military?  I have a little over 1100 hours on Sea Kings.  I assess the risks everytime I go flying (just like every other aviator flying every other type aircraft in the world).  If I'm not comfortable, I don't go.  it's not like I'm driving in a LAV III in Afghanistan- that takes balls!

We fly in a demanding and unforgiving environment (low level, at sea, often at night).  The aircraft is old and most of the sensors are obsolete.  Usually, our accidents or incidents can be traced back to some sort of crew or maintenance error.  That said, seldom does the aircraft just spontaneously quit working and crash.

If there is one thing that I would like every Army.ca member to take away from my post it is:

SEA KING HELICOPTERS ARE NOT INHERENTLY UNSAFE!!

Some of you may be flying off of a ship with us in the very near future on exercise or on operations.  I want you to feel comfortable and confident doing so.

Cheers.

Offline Inch

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Re: Canada converts Sea Kings for battlefield role with SCTF
« Reply #21 on: February 09, 2006, 21:03:07 »
Amen brother.
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Re: Canada converts Sea Kings for battlefield role with SCTF
« Reply #22 on: February 10, 2006, 02:37:31 »
40 mm Bofors actually and none were from the CPFs.

You're both right.  Protecteur was armed with both 40mm Bofors and 20mm CIWS in 1990.  I believe the 20mm were taken from CPFs, or diverted from ones that were to be fitted to CPFs.  A point to note, the Navy website on the Protecteur has got an error.  It states that she was rearmed with 20mm Bofors vice 40mm.

Here's the site- http://www.navy.dnd.ca/PROTECTEUR/about/ship_about_e.asp?category=92 if anyone knows who updates it, maybe they could correct it.
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Offline Whiskey_Dan

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Re: Canada converts Sea Kings for battlefield role with SCTF
« Reply #23 on: February 10, 2006, 03:06:12 »
2 quickie type questions.
1) Where are these "amphibious assault" ships coming from?
and 2) When will these ships actually come into service?
Maybe its not so much the seakings we should be worrying about.
Just my 2 cents.

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Offline ArmyRick

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Re: Canada converts Sea Kings for battlefield role with SCTF
« Reply #24 on: February 10, 2006, 05:28:48 »
Interesting use of re-roling choppers. I bet in their "aged state" sea kings will be more usefull than griffons in the battlefield mobility role.
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